Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Requiescat in Pace

I just returned from Deborah Mason's funeral (if you have read my earlier postings, you will recall that she was a fellow Latin teacher who passed away last Saturday evening). A colleague from a neighboring school district accompanied me and made the three-hour trek a much more enjoyable experience. We arrived an hour early but were still directed to overflow seating. There was standing room only by the time the service began. There were very many friends and family members, present and past students, some with their parents, and a large number of Latin teachers from around Virginia.

I was looking for the right word to describe Debbie in an earlier entry and the word that was provided during the service was "formidible." That, I think, is the best word to use.

Besides the touching words from her eulogies, there were two moments which stand out in my mind... as we were exiting the church, two girls fell into each other's arms and wept for their lost teacher, when they separated, there was a look in their eyes which seemed to ask each other "It will all be OK, won't it?" The second moment was when the funeral procession passed Altavista High School en route to the cemetery. Out in front of the building was a large sign which read "We'll miss you, Miss Mason!" She will indeed be missed by her family and friends, her students and colleagues at school, the Executive Board and co-chairs of the Virginia Junior Classical League, and Executive Board and members of the Classical Association of Virginia. Latin in Virginia will not be same without her.

Requiescat in pace!

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